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16 Mar 2012


Royal Flora Ratchaphruek, 2011: Reviving Chiang Mai Tourism (Business Brief No. 3260)


Organizing agencies and local travel-related businesses anticipate that the second Chiang Mai International Horticultural Exposition, known as the ‘Royal Flora Ratchaphruek', December 14, 2011-March 14, 2012, will help reinvigorate tourism following the nation's worst flooding in decades, while tourist arrivals there have fallen since the first such exposition in 2006.

KResearch expects that the number of visitors to Chiang Mai during the three-month event will reach 2 million arrivals, 1.6 million of which would be Thais, plus 400,000 foreign nationals. It is expected that they will spend around THB15 billion during that period. Of that revenue, 30 percent would go to souvenirs and indigenous edibles, 20 percent to accommodation, over 15 percent on dining, with the rest being spent on transportation, entertainment and leisure activities, e.g., sightseeing, plus venue entrance fees (such as at the Royal Flora Ratchaphruek).

In addition, it is expected that local visitors to the Royal Flora Ratchaphruek will add at least THB1 billion to tourist spending during that period. As a result, we forecast that tourist spending during the three-month event in Chiang Mai will total about THB16 billion.

Barring any unexpected catastrophes, KResearch expects that Chiang Mai tourism will exhibit promising growth in 2012, with the number of tourist arrivals surging to about 5.8 million, being 11.5 percent higher than the 5.2 million projected in 2011. It is expected that tourism-related spending in Chiang Mai will reach around THB48.5 billion, up 16.9 percent over the estimated THB41.5 billion in 2011.